13 March 2021 | General

Tim Macrow takes Phillip Island opener

Tim Macrow claimed victory in the opening VHT S5000 Australian Drivers’ Championship race at Phillip Island after beating pole-sitter James Golding into the first corner.

RESULTS: Phillip Island Race 1

Macrow led home Thomas Randle and Nathan Herne at the chequered flag after a quick get-away from the front row of the grid.

Pole-sitter Golding struggled to get going when the race got underway and fell down the order to fourth, while Macrow took advantage and swept through into the lead.

Herne and Randle also moved up the order into second and third position respectively but the action was briefly neutralised with an early safety car.

Braydan Willmington had to be recovered off the main straight after a problem getting going at the start.

Once the race resumed, Macrow set about building a margin out front while Randle and Herne squabbled over the runner-up position.

Randle was able to make a move at Turn 1 on the restart to take over second but Macrow was untouchable in the lead.

The Castrol Racing driver closed the gap to almost half a second but settled for second as Macrow took out his second victory of the season in his UCS Group Racing entry – leading all 14-laps.

Herne came across the line in striking distance of Randle, with the podium covered by less than a second.

Golding finished the race third after falling from pole on the opening lap, while Joey Mawson was fifth.

Sixth place went the way of Luis Leeds ahead of Ricky Capo and Cooper Webster in seventh and eighth respectively.

Antonio Astuti and Kaleb Ngatoa completed the top 10.

Race 2 is scheduled for 13:40 AEDT and will be broadcast live on the Screens of Seven.

Qualifying wrap

James Golding continued his unbeaten form at Phillip Island clinching pole position for the VHT S5000 Australian Drivers’ Championship.

Having dominated practice on Friday, the Team Valvoline GRM squad wheeled out Golding’s car on Saturday morning for Qualifying as the ones to beat.

Golding proved his raw pace by topping the time-sheets with a lap time of 1:25.137s, good enough for pole for Race 1.

UCS Group Racing’s Tim Macrow pipped the Castrol Racing car of Thomas Randle late in the session for second position with Golding half a second clear at the head of the field.

Team Valvoline GRM’s Nathan Herne and Luis Leeds in his Garry Rogers Motorsport entry completed the top five.

There was a brief red flag after an off-track excursion for Antonio Astuti who spun through the gravel trap and tagged the concrete wall at the final corner.

Ricky Capo, Cooper Webster, Kaleb Ngatoa, Braydan Willmington, and Joey Mawson completed the top 10.

Astuti remained in pit lane after the incident for the rest of the session, while Mawson only completed four laps.